Hi all,

Bottom line: I am about to resign and have a bad relationship with my boss. How can I diminish the negativity after I leave?


Background: I was hired a bit more than a year ago to lead a team of 3 professionals. I was supposed to start immediately. It was not a dangle. In addition, I was promised (in a written form) a raise in 1/2 a year.

However, at first, my manager said that before I can start managing the team I should go in depth into the work details and know more about the processes. Every couple of weeks she has been coming with different requirements and excuses to why she still can not allow me to do the job I was hired to.

After ~4 months, she has had a conversation with me and said that "The role has changed and it is not managerial anymore (p.s. it has never been). And....since the job has changed - we will not give you the raise we told you about when you were hired. If you want, we would like you to stay, but if you want something different, feel free to leave".

Later, I have found that she had been behaving dishonestly in other circumstances as well, but that does not really matter...

Anyway, I couldn't leave at that time (personal issues) and kept on working. I know that she would have been more that glad to kick me out, but I was a very good (probably the best) worker in the team and the CTO and the CEO appreciate me very much. Therefore, I was "protected".

Our relationship has dramatically deteriorated - no weeklies for 3 months, she kind of ignores me...etc. No vivid clash, but there is a HUGE elephant in the room.

Now, after a bit over a year at work, I found a new place and going to resign. I had listened to the podcast on how to resign professionally and this is exactly what I will do.

However, she knows many people and I don't know where we can meet in the future. Therefore, I want to act cleverly and not to be "Mr. right". What I care about is my career in the future!

Even though I was not the one that acted dishonestly, what can I do to improve the relationship before I leave? To make it at least "neutral" and not "lousy"? To take the huge elephant out of the room?

What would YOU do?


Thank you very much for your advices!

Ariashley's picture

I would probably just keep it simple.  I would schedule a meeting (or stop by when I knew my boss would be available).  Then I would hand my manager the resignation letter I already printed and signed and state my intention to resign and my intended last day.  If there was anything I learned from the job, I would probably just add something about appreciating the opportunity to learn X and Y and ask if there was anything else my manager required (any HR forms or other items needed).  Your boss will know why you are leaving without you saying it anyway, so no need to even go there.  Hopefully, your new opportunity is something you're excited about, but I wouldn't even state what that opporuntity is, unless she asks.  

If she asks why your leaving (which I honestly think is unlikely), you could then say that you were expecting a manager role based on the interview process and offer letter.  You understand that circumstances of the company/role have changed, but you are continuing your career elsewhere to align with your career objectives.  You perhaps could add something else about whatever you might have learned while you were there.

I had an employee resign once via email while I was in my office and he was at his desk 20 feet away.  Don't do that.  

JasonK's picture

Thank you very much for your answer.

Kevin1's picture

I am in agreement with Airashley with a small suggestion...  

If she asks why your leaving (dont mention that you were expecting a manager role based on the interview process and offer letter)  Go straight to "you have been offered an opportunity to continuing your career in a role that is aligned with your career objectives".  

There is no need to bring up the pain point of your unrealised expectations.  There is almost no way to talk about it with her without it spiraling into unwanted territory.

Even if they ask you specifically, I wouldn't comment with anything more than, "I feel this new role is more aligned with my career objectives".  If you keep repeating that, they will stop asking you for specifics.

Oh, and make sure you don't resign until after you have already accepted the new role.

Hope this helps.


JasonK's picture

Thank you Kev. I just did and that was exactly what I said :) Thank yu for your advice.